Mini celebrated the tenth anniversary of the brand on March 22, 2002 – an event that must have been very satisfying as it had plenty of detractors during its launch. They had predicted Mini to last just a few years because it had only one model when it was launched. They didn’t believe that customers would buy a small, three-door premium car again and again.
Mini did a terrific job at proving its critics wrong. The British brand overturned the idea that small meant cheap. In the last decade, the brand benefited from the reputation that Mini Cooper achieved in the 1960s.
It later was known for its sporty, exceptional, fun-to-drive vehicles, attributed to Mini's front-wheel-drive configuration, performance improvements and its many wins in European rally in the years that passed. Mini earned its legendary status because of these victories. Mini is perceived to be a British icon in the same way that the Volkswagen Beetle is a German icon, says Autonews.
Mini is successful in the U.S. due to a blend of aggressive marketing, innovative advertising and product investment.
Since the Mini brand was launched, its sales in the U.S. have totaled 429,439 vehicles up to February. Mini's lineup, with the help of parent BMW, was expanded to now have six models that include roadsters and all-wheel-drive crossovers.
There’s no indication that Mini’s sales are on their way down. Mini had record sales in the U.S. last year, having sold 26% more vehicles (57,511 units) than in 2010. Mini is on track to surpass this figure this year. Sales through February have been up 33%.